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Discuss all things tuning in this section. News, products, problems and results.
I'm about to start purchasing tuner software/hardware and wonder what others use and why they use it.
Being in Australia the mainstay cars are Holden (GM) and Ford so that is what I will concentrate on starting on.
So the options to begin with are EFIlive GM-Dodge Cummins, or HP Tuners GM-Ford-Dodge, or SCT Ford or a combination of these (2 of the 3)
Are they pretty much comparable, for the vehicles they do, or does one or another have an competitive tuning edge for particular vehicles?
I haven't used EFI Live so I can't comment too specifically on it as a product. I've used both HP Tuners (extensively) as well as SCT so fell I can compare these products pretty well. HP Tuners Ford support until recently was quite limited, particularly for the ADM BA-FG XR6/XR8 and SCT had a clear advantage with these vehicles. With the newer Fords such as the new Mustang, it appears the roles have been reversed and HP Tuners definitions are more complete.
Where EFI Live had a distinct advantage for some time was with the ability to view and modify the virtual VE tables within the software where as HP Tuners required the Bluecat tool to do this externally. With the new 3.0 VCM Suite software this problem has been fixed and we can now view and edit the VVE tables directly in the software.
Comparing SCT with HP Tuners you also need to consider the cost. SCT (at least when I had it) is only available to a commercial tuning workshop, not an end user. I think my old shop paid around $3000 AUD to purchase the software and then every car you tune requires a hardware device that stays with the car and this works out more expensive than the HP Tuners credit system.
All three pieces of software inevitably have their pros and cons but hopefully the above is of some help to you.
Thanks Andre, correct me if I'm wrong but from what you said the Australian Fords are better of using SCT and the new American imports (which will be the norm soon cause Ford Australia is closing down this year) are better of with HP Tuners. Is that correct?
I gather you like HP Tuners for GM products, is there any particular reason for this or is it just because you haven't used EFIlive?
Originally the definitions for the Australian Ford vehicles were quite limited, particularly for the BA and BF but FG was a little better. I'm not sure if the definitions have improved recently though as I haven't revisited these cars recently. You definitely couldn't deal with something like a cam swap on an XR8 with HP Tuners at the stage we purchased SCT though.
The decision for me between EFI Live and HP Tuners was almost a coin toss. I think the decision was eventually made based on HP Tuners wider support at the time and the consideration that a larger development team would mean that support for additional models would be added faster. As it panned out when I first purchased HP Tuners around 8 years ago this perhaps didn't end up being the case though.
From what I've seen sct new versions don't support the older ba falcon. Hp tuners development and scanning ability is a little better now and can still use on the older ba Falcons
My original intention was to get EFIlive but I was concerned with the limited usable (for Australia) manufacturer range. It really isn't a common thing to see a Dodge Cummins in my area so that is really of no use to me. Anyway unless someone else pipes in I think I'll go for HP Tuners VCM Suite.
Thanks for the input Andre and bogga.